2014 Steel Industry Profile

  • The steel industry directly or indirectly supports more than one million U.S. jobs. Every one job in the American steel industry supports nearly seven jobs in the U.S. economy, reflecting its ripple effect on employment.
  • Based on 2013 data, the U.S. steel industry operates over 100 facilities employing 149, 000 people and producing steel shipments valued at 75 billion dollars.
  • Because of steel’s broad range of applications – including renewable energy infrastructure, machinery and equipment, defense, transportation and infrastructure – the industry is vital to our nation’s economic and national security.
  • Labor productivity has seen a five-fold increase since the early 1980s, going from an average of 10.1 man-hours per finished ton to an average of 2.0 man-hours per finished ton of steel in 2013. Many North American plants are producing a ton of finished steel in less than one man-hour, and productivity of U.S. steel producers has improved 5.7 percent per year on average (exceeding, the 3.9 percent growth in U.S. manufacturing labor productivity over the same period.)
  • Steel is the most recycled material on the planet. The overall recycling rate of steel in 2012 is 88 percent based on the most recent data compiled by the Steel Recycling Institute (SRI) through 2012. All steel is 100 percent recyclable and more steel is recycled each year than aluminum, copper, paper, glass and plastic combined.
  • In the past 25 years, more than one billion tons of steel scrap have been consumed by steelmaking furnaces in North America and recycled into new steel.
  • Through the development and application of new steelmaking technologies and through the innovations of the workers on the plant floor, the industry has reduced energy intensity by 28 percent and CO2 emissions by 35 percent per ton of steel shipped since 1990.
  • The North American steel industry is committed to the highest safety and health standards. Our members are committed to continuous improvement in safety and health and to achieving and injury-free workplace. Since 2005, U.S. steel producers have achieved a reduction of 50 percent in both the total OSHA recordable injury and illness and lost workday case rates, while reaching record levels of productivity.
  • Steel is at the core of the green economy, in which economic growth and environmental responsibility work hand in hand. It is the main material used in delivering renewable energy -- solar, tidal and wind; and the only material that reduces greenhouse gas emissions in all phases of an automobile’s life: manufacturing, driving and end-of-life.

Click here for a PDF version of the 2014 Industry Profile.